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Monday, September 16, 2013

9/16 Links Part 1: Anti-Zionist Illusions, Col. Richard Kemp - Syria Plan ‘not realistic’

From Ian:

The Depravity of the Anti-Israeli Left
One is tempted to leave Ian Lustick’s Sunday op-ed “Two-State Illusion,” alone. Its stench is so overwhelming that one might expect it to harm Lustick’s cause without the need for commentary. But because Lustick is a political science professor at the University of Pennsylvania, one of our most prestigious universities, and because the New York Times has chosen to amplify his view, it is worth considering as a symptom of the depravity of the anti-Israeli left, as what passes for sober commentary in that crowd.
Two States and the Anti-Zionist Illusion
They also understand just how dishonest Lustick’s vision of a post-Zionist Middle East is. The professor claims Israel’s collapse will lead to an alliance between secular Palestinians and post-Zionist Jews (those Haaretz columnists) and others to build a secular democracy. He thinks the large percentage of Israelis whose families fled or were thrown out of Arab and Muslim countries (a refugee population that no one thinks to compensate for their losses) will come to think of themselves as Arabs. He also posits an alliance between anti-Zionist Haredim and Islamists. He claims Jews who want to live in the West Bank can be accommodated in the post-Zionist world. All this is nonsense.
Israeli Jews know the fate of non-Muslim minorities in the Arab and Muslim world. If Israel acknowledges that all Jews would be evacuated from a putative Palestinian state it is not because they agree with the Arab vision of a Judenrein entity but because even those on the left know the Jews there would last as long as the greenhouses left behind in Gaza in 2005. Those “Arab Jews” that Lustick thinks will be at home in the Greater Palestine he envisages know exactly what fate awaits them in a world where they are not protected by a Jewish army.
British Airways apologises over 'Palestinian Territories' marker over Israel on in-flight map
British Airways has apologised for displaying an in-flight map with the words “Palestinian Territories” covering part of Israel.
The image appears on flights between Heathrow and Israel and was brought to the airline’s attention by a Jewish passenger.
British Airways has contacted the manufacturer and requested that the reference be removed as soon as possible.
Jerusalem 'Sheshet HaYamim' Street in 'Palestine'?
While the representatives of Israel and the Palestinian Authority are negotiating intensely in order to draw the final borders, according to "Google Maps", it turns out that the map of Israel's permanent borders has already been plotted.
One user from Arutz Sheva was surprised to find the results on Google Maps for the Jerusalem street called "Sheshet HaYamim" (Six Day War) to be in "Palestine." The Jerusalem street, which is located near Ammunition Hill, was included in the liberated territories established during the Six Day War.
Below each mention of the street, including references as to the street intersections, the word "Palestine" appears prominently instead of Israel.
JPost Editorial: Israel and the Syria deal
It is too early to assess the implications for the Jewish state of an increasingly assertive Russia and a more hesitant US, particularly with regard to Iran.
Is the Russian-led agreement with the United States to do away with Syria’s stockpile of chemical weapons good for the Jews?
Taken at face value, the deal appears to serve a major Israeli interest. Under the terms of the six-clause accord, Russia and the US will ensure that the tons of chemical weapons, meticulously gathered and stored by the late Syrian president Hafez Assad, will be located, dismantled and destroyed over the next eight months.
Ex-British army colonel to Post: Russian-US plan on Syria chemical weapons ‘not realistic’
Speaking to the Post by phone, Kemp, who also served in the UK’s Joint Intelligence Committee and Cabinet Office Briefing Room, said: “I think it’s extremely difficult to do something like this during an active conflict, during a war. I think it’ll take a very large amount of time, with a significant amount of military protection, so that the inspectors can be as safe as they can be. That aspect will present huge challenges. Which country, first of all, will provide the scientists who will take these risks and the military forces to back them up? It’s a very dangerous situation.”
Kemp observed that there is a wide variety of factions in Syria, including regime forces and jihadists, meaning that it would be difficult to send weapons inspectors to the country.
“Secondly, to get verification in this kind of situation, I would say, is impossible,” he stated. “It would be very easy for President Assad to hide or remove out of the country significant quantities of chemical weapons.
‘Netanyahu backed Russian chemical arms deal in call to Kerry’
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told US Secretary of State John Kerry last week that he should try to reach a deal with Russia to confiscate Syria’s chemical weapons arsenal as an alternative to a threatened US strike on the Assad regime, the Wall Street Journal reported Monday.
According to the report, Kerry called Netanyahu on September 11 and the Israeli leader told him that he didn’t think that Russia was bluffing about its plan for Syria.
Kerry, in Israel, says Syria deal ‘sets a marker’ for Iran
In comments aimed at his hosts, Kerry said the deal, if successful, “will have set a marker for the standard of behavior with respect to Iran and with respect to North Korea and any rogue state, [or] group that tries to reach for these kind of weapons.”...
Netanyahu thanked Kerry for his efforts to purge Syria of chemical weapons and linked the agreement with Syria to the ongoing campaign to curb Iran’s controversial nuclear program.
“We have been closely following – and support – your ongoing efforts to rid Syria of its chemical weapons,” Netanyahu said. “The Syrian regime must be stripped of all its chemical weapons, and that would make our entire region a lot safer.
Obama Says Iran ‘Shouldn’t Draw a Lesson’ From U.S. Handling of Syria Chemical Weapons Crisis
U.S. President Barack Obama warned Sunday that his country’s hesitation in carrying out a military strike against Syria has no bearing on how it will address Iran’s push for nuclear weapons.
“My suspicion is that the Iranians recognize they shouldn’t draw a lesson that we haven’t struck– to think we won’t strike Iran. On the other hand, what is– what– they should draw from this lesson is that there is the potential of resolving these issues diplomatically,” he told ABC’s George Stephanopoulos in an interview.
US-Russia deal a ‘victory,’ says Syrian minister
Syrian Reconciliation Minister Ali Haidar was the first Syrian official to refer to the deal, telling Russian news agency Ria Novosti that “on the one hand, it helps Syria come out of the crisis and, on the other, it helps avoid the war against Syria by depriving those who wanted to launch it of arguments to do so.”
He said it was “a victory for Syria, achieved thanks to our Russian friends.”
Saudi Daily: 'Chemical Weapons Smuggled to Hezbollah'
President Bashar Al-Assad has smuggled part of his chemical weapons arsenal to Hezbollah in a bid to evade international inspection, the Saudi newspaper Al Watan reported Monday.
The report quoted Syrian National Coalition member Kamal al-Labwani as claiming that: "The Syrian regime has transferred some of its chemical weapons arsenal to its ally Hezbollah aboard trucks used to transport vegetables."
The article published Monday, also included a claim that the Assad regime had covertly moved significant parts of its chemical weapons aboard Russian ships docked along the Syrian coastline.
Taking down Hezbollah
The London-based pan-Arab daily Al-Hayat reports that the recommendations were made during a meeting of GCC interior ministers and their advisers in Riyadh yesterday. The recommendations are aimed at not only preventing any “terror-related activities, but also to shut down Hezbollah’s sources of financing.” The list is seen as a followup to a GCC proposal issued in July 2012 to address Hezbollah’s actions.
Most notably, tiny Bahrain has been the main GCC member to take serious action against Hezbollah’s interests in the country, partially due to Hezbollah’s support of Bahraini Shiite dissidents. Other nations have grown increasingly upset by Hezbollah’s participation in the Syrian civil war on the side of the government.
Roadside bomb in Sinai hurts nine police recruits
Suspected Islamic militants set off a roadside bomb in the Sinai Peninsula as a bus full of police conscripts was driving by, wounding nine of them, Egyptian security officials said.
Monday’s ambush on the road outside the town of Rafah, on the border with the Gaza Strip, came amid a major counterinsurgency operation by Egypt’s military in the lawless desert region.
Egypt Continues Crackdown on Sinai Militants Near Gaza Border, Finds Anti-Aircraft Missiles and Motorized Paragliders
The army has destroyed 152 smuggling tunnels running from the Sinai into Gaza since June 30, he added.
On Saturday the Egyptian army discovered explosives under a border guard post in Rafah and later found a detonator 800 meters away, Reuters quoted Ali as saying.
Ali also said that during its recent operations the army seized weapons, including anti-aircraft missiles and motorized paragliders, which indicated an effort to develop new methods of attack.
Egyptian Government Defends Al Jazeera Ban
Sherif Shawki told the Wall Street Journal that Al Jazeera Egypt had "violated the law" by operating without the necessary permits. Despite not having the correct permits, the channel had been broadcasting in Egypt since the 2011 popular uprising which ousted President Hosni Mubarak.
Under Mubarak's regime Al Jazeera had been forbidden from broadcasting in Egypt. But the Qatari channel found a friend in the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, which rose to power in the aftermath of Mubarak's overthrow. Qatar is the leading sponsor of the Muslim Brotherhood movement worldwide, and a key supporter of the administration of the Brotherhood's successful presidential candidate Mohammed Morsi.
MEMRI: Editor of Al-Ahram: US Plans Russia Revolution, Supports Iran's Nukes, Provoked Pearl Harbor Attack


Increasingly sectarian protests rock Turkey
The latest street unrest shows the grievances that prompted tens of thousands to protest Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s government in June have not faded. And his government has been hurt by those protests — for instance, losing the chance last week to host the 2020 Summer Olympics partly due to Turkey’s damaged international image.
But this round of demonstrations was sparked far from Istanbul and in a very different way — the death of 22-year-old Ahmet Atakan, who died under disputed circumstances following a protest Monday in the southern city of Antakya.